Full Circle: Hamilton jewellery designer Laura Tedesco’s custom creations shine bright
By Amanda Lee
Laura Tedesco comes by her love of jewellery honestly. The daughter of jewellers, she is the third generation of a sparkling legacy. Her grandfather founded Venetian Jewellers in Italy, then later in 1954 in Hamilton, the same city where she grew up and continues to run her own jewellery design business.
Tedesco has fond memories of being a little girl and watching her father sorting through diamonds or adjusting watches at the bench, or her mother ordering exquisite pieces and arranging them artfully in the showcase. To this day her father Dino, though retired after 50 years, still helps out and consults at Tedesco’s studio. She counts her parents as one of the major inspirations in her life.
Although Tedesco’s mother passed away when the designer was 14, she continued to inspire her daughter, who created one of her first pieces of custom jewellery in honour of her mother. The design showcased a beautiful marquise diamond left to her by her mother, and featured key two looped “L’s” locked together in infinity. The design represents the bond between mother and daughter, and Tedesco’s infinite love for her mother Linda. Tedesco’s ring won first place in the 2010 Canadian Excellence in Design Competition.
As well as drawing inspiration from her family, Tedesco is also inspired by many moments in her life, big and small. As she says, “It could be an encounter with a perfect stranger, my travels or simply going for a walk and finding a unique design element within architecture or in nature. Inspiration comes from anything that brings butterflies to my stomach.” Tedesco has made a thriving career out of transforming her inspiration into custom creations to help others commemorate or celebrate the special people and moments in their lives.
Tedesco’s passion is for custom design. She has helped countless clients attain their own personal expressions through the re-styling of legacy pieces or by creating one-of-a-kind jewellery and engagement rings. “I love designing pieces that have a meaning or story behind it,” says Tedesco. “The challenge of telling that story through the design. I also enjoy breathing new life into heirloom or dated jewellery by repurposing the gemstones into a piece that will speak to the individual.”
The testimonials on Tedesco’s website attest to her skill and professionalism, and the impact that custom designed jewellery can have for people. Whether restoring and reviving a much-loved but fragile engagement ring into a new design, transforming two pieces of jewellery made up of 60 diamonds into one beautiful commemorative ring, or
bringing to life “four-of-a-kind” matching rings for four sisters, Tedesco seems to meet each request with creativity and a genuine appreciation of her clients’ needs.
Tedesco says that she enjoys designing for many different clients, and is open to requests from near and far. “Currently people can acquire my pieces by visiting my studio (Laura Tedesco Jewellery Design) on Locke St. in Hamilton, Ontario. However, I’ve also worked with clients outside the country via email and telephone.” When asked if there is a specific price range her pieces tend to fall within, Tedesco says: “I don’t have a specific price point for my jewellery design. Each design is unique. We try our best to cater within specific budgets.”
Bringing It Home
While Tedesco is now back in her family home town of Hamilton, she travelled afar for her beginnings in jewellery design. After completing college and acquiring the Diamonds Graduate certificate through the GIA, Tedesco was working full time retail at her parents’ store. Feeling not completely fulfilled, Tedesco travelled to Florence, Italy, where she pursued a jewellery design course and was soon sketching new designs through the streets and landscapes of the Italian countryside.
When the time was right, Tedesco returned home to pursue her dream of designing jewellery–and the rest is history. Just like the endless elongated circles of the infinity ring, so has her life come full circle, to return to family in the jewellery business. This includes not only her father, but her husband, John Eleftheriou, a CAD designer who joined Laura Tedesco Jewellery Design to be part of a growing family business committed to pushing boundaries in the art of crafting and designing jewellery.
Tedesco feels fortunate to be able to continue keeping family and her passion for jewellery close. Running her own business means that she has the flexibility to enjoy her son Alexander’s visits to the store, and he has the chance to experience the joy of watching parents deeply engaged in their work, as Tedesco did herself when she was young.
When asked about future goals in design, Tedesco responds: “To continue designing unique and meaningful pieces for my clients. I’d also love to add some new designs that I’ve been dreaming about to my collections.” An inspired designer’s work is truly never done.